Valganciclovir is an antiviral drug used to prevent cytomegalovirus (CMV) infection in organ transplant recipients. In addition, this drug is also used to treat eye infections (retinitis) due to CMV in people with HIV/AIDS.

Valganciclovir works by slowing the growth of the CMV virus. This drug cannot cure diseases caused by cytomegalovirus infection . However, valganciclovir can prevent the spread of the virus to other parts of the body and reduce the risk of complications, such as blindness .

Trademarks for valganciclovir: Valcyte, Valgovir

What is Valganciclovir

class Prescription drug
Category Anti virus
Benefit Preventing CMV infection in organ transplant recipients and treating CMV retinitis in people with HIV/ AIDS
Consumed by Mature
Valganciclovir for pregnant and lactating women Category D: There is evidence that the ingredients pose a risk to the human fetus, but the benefits may outweigh the risks, for example in dealing with a life-threatening situation.

It is not known whether valganciclovir is absorbed into breast milk or not. However, it is advised not to breastfeed while taking valganciclovir.

Drug form Tablet

Precautions Before Taking Valganciclovir

Before taking valganciclovir there are a number of things you need to pay attention to, namely:

  • Do not use this medication if you are allergic to valganciclovir, acyclovir , or ganciclovir .
  • Tell your doctor if you have had or currently have kidney disease, blood disorders, or bone marrow disorders, such as anemia, leukopenia , neutropenia, thrombocytopenia , or a decrease in all blood cell counts.
  • Tell your doctor if you are having dialysis or radiation therapy.
  • Avoid consuming alcoholic beverages while on treatment with valganciclovir.
  • Tell your doctor if you are taking valganciclovir before having your immunizations. Avoid contact with people who have recently received live vaccines, such as the typhoid vaccine or the MMR vaccine.
  • Tell your doctor if you are pregnant, breastfeeding or planning a pregnancy.
  • If you are sexually active, use birth control during treatment for up to 90 days after the last dose for men, or 30 days for women. This is important because valganciclovir can harm the fetus if pregnancy occurs during this time.
  • Tell your doctor if you are taking certain medications, supplements or herbal products, to avoid drug interactions.
  • Immediately consult a doctor if you have an allergic drug reaction or serious side effects after taking valganciclovir.

Dosage and Rules for Use of Valganciclovir

The following is the general dosage for valganciclovir based on the age and health condition of the patient:

  • Objective: To treat cytomegalovirus retinitis in HIV/AIDS patients.
    The initial dose is 900 mg twice daily for 21 days. Maintenance dose 900 mg once daily. The dose can be returned to the initial dose if the eye condition decreases in the middle of the maintenance dose.
  • Purpose: To prevent cytomegalovirus infection in organ transplant recipients
    900 mg once daily, given within 10 days after transplantation, continued for 100 days after transplantation. Treatment may be continued for up to 200 days in kidney transplant patients .

How to Take Valganciclovir Correctly

Follow  the doctor 's recommendations and read the information printed on the drug packaging before starting to use valganciclovir. Do not reduce or increase your dose without your doctor's approval.

This drug can be taken while eating or immediately after eating. Swallow the tablet whole and do not split or chew the tablet. If the crushed tablet gets in contact with the skin or eyes, wash the affected area immediately with running water.

Make sure there is sufficient time between one dose and the next. Always try to take valganciclovir at the same time every day so that the drug's effects can work optimally.

While undergoing treatment with valganciclovir, your doctor will ask you to undergo routine controls and regular blood tests. Always follow the directions given by the doctor.

If you forget to take valganciclovir, take this drug as soon as you remember. However, if the next scheduled medication is near, ignore the missed dose and do not double the next dose.

Store valganciclovir at room temperature, away from heat, humidity and direct sunlight. Keep medicine out of reach of children.

Valganciclovir Interactions with Other Drugs

There are several interactions that can occur if valganciclovir is used together with other medicines, including:

  • Increased risk of seizures when used with imipenem-cilastin
  • Increased risk of anemia or neutropenia when used with zidovudine or mycophenolate mofetil
  • Increased risk of overdose and side effects of valganciclovir when used with probenecid
  • Increased risk of kidney damage and bone marrow disorders when used with dapsone , vinblastine , vincristine , or amphotericin B

Valganciclovir Side Effects and Dangers

There are several side effects that can appear after taking valganciclovir, including:

  • Dizzy
  • Drowsiness
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Headache
  • Fever
  • Sleep disorders
  • Stomach ache
  • Diarrhea
  • Constipation
  • Tremors

Call your doctor if your complaints don't get better or get worse. See a doctor immediately if you have an allergic drug reaction or more serious side effects, such as:

  • Unusual bruising or bleeding
  • Often have sore throats that are difficult to heal and accompanied by fever
  • Reduced frequency and amount of urine or unable to urinate
  • Dark urine
  • Yellowing of the skin or eyes ( jaundice )
  • Mental changes, such as confusion or hallucinations
  • seizures
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